Classic Golf Drinks for the 19th Hole

Global Golfer takes a light hearted look at classic golf drinks to round off a perfect day on the links.

Golf is a sport with the power to make you the hero of your own story or send you into the depths of despair.

Lucky for us then that it’s quite acceptable to finish off a day’s golf with a stiff drink in the clubhouse bar – or the 19th hole as it’s best known.

Whether it’s a wood panelled bar with a roaring fire, or a sun splashed terrace overlooking the Red Sea, drinks are the perfect way to end a day playing golf with friends.

In the three decades I’ve been playing golf, I’ve been lucky enough to be introduced to a weird and wonderful collection of classic golf drinks.

Remember, always drink responsibly and for those who don’t drink alcohol, we’ve included an awesome non-alcoholic drink that will leave you feeling fresh and ready for your next round.

ALCOHOLIC GOLF DRINKS

Kummel

Kummel is a caraway-flavoured liqueur that was originally made all over the Baltic in the 19th century but is best associated with Germany and the historical Duchy of Prussia.

It’s especially popular in elite Scottish golf clubs. The largest percentage of Kummel consumption in Scotland takes place at Prestwick Golf Club, Muirfield – home to the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers – and at The R&A (The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews).

A bottle of Kummel
Kummel – “Putting Mixture” – copyright Dominic Lockyer (creative commons)
Kummel

Known as “putting mixture,” the potent and syrupy silver spirit is thought to calm nerves and settle stomachs – ideal for golfers to drink before heading onto the links.

Pink Gin

That time served classic, the G&T (Gin and Tonic), is an everyday tipple in golf clubs the world over.

Pink Gin though is a little different and a refined take on a set of classic ingredients loved by golfers.

Pink Gin cocktails became fashionable in England in the mid-19th century.

They are made from Plymouth gin and a dash of Angostura bitters, a dark red bitters that makes the whole drink pinky. Lemon rind is also commonly used as a garnish.

Whisky-Mac

Golf and Scotland go together like wine and cheese, which is why that most famous of Scottish tipples – Whisky – is a staple at any golf club bar.

A Whisky Mac is a cocktail using a blended Scotch and green ginger wine. If your round was a disaster and you need something with a kick to set you back on track, try a Whisky-Mac.

Azalea

This golfing cocktail is inspired by The Masters Tournament, the first Major of every golfing season, and specifically by the Azalea bushes which bloom in the Georgia sunshine.

The bushes themselves are poisonous but the cocktail is not. It’s simple to make, here’s how:

  • 1 ounce lime or lemon juice
  • 1 ounce pineapple juice
  • 3 ounces gin
  • Dash Grenadine

Method

Mix 1 part lime or lemon juice, 1 part pineapple juice and 3 parts gin in a cocktail shaker with ice. Add grenadine to get an azalea shade of pink. Shake, and pour over ice in a highball glass.

Port

Inspired by the traditional toast drink of a British Army Officer’s Mess, Port (a fortified Red wine) is also a firm favourite with traditional golf clubs, either in a hip flask on the course or in the bar to help warm up after a cold Winter round.

Port – providing fortitude to golfers and soldiers for centuries

Gunner

A perfect drink for quenching your thirst post-golf on a hot summer’s day.

Gunner

A Gunner is made with Ginger Beer or Ginger Ale, lime and angostura bitters (44.7% proof alcohol) and has a strong, sharp taste. The fizz and ginger offsets the citrus nicely and produces a refreshing settling drink.

NON-ALCOHOLIC GOLF DRINKS

Arnold Palmer

Possibly the most iconic and best-known golfing drink is the ‘Arnold Palmer.’

Named after the man credited with making golf popular worldwide in the 1960’s and 1970’s, an Arnold Palmer is three parts unsweetened Iced Tea to one part Lemonade.

Mr. Palmer ordered the drink at the bar during the 1960 U.S Open at Cherry Hills G.C and a woman copied him, saying “I’ll have one of those Palmer drinks.”

A full range of Arnold Palmer iced tea and lemonade drinks has been on general sale in the USA since 2001. Add Vodka to this drink and it’s called a “John Daly,” after one of the PGA Tour’s most colourful characters and biggest drinkers.

There you have it, seven classic golf drinks to quench thirst and lift spirits at the 19th hole.

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